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July 4th Celebration, Tropical Fruit (and Edible Flower) Edition

July 4th Tropical Fruit Edition
I’m writing this from a jungle somewhere in western Thailand, and there are lots and lots of butterfly pea flowers, langsat, and rambutans around. I hope you like this tropical fruit (and edible flower) edition of July 4th celebration. I sure did (guess who ate the props).

Happy July 4th to those who celebrate it. Hope you’re enjoying the long holiday and having fun with your loved ones. My current location and situation don’t allow me to cook very often, so there won’t be many recipes on the blog for the rest of the summer, but I’m pretty active on Instagram, so if you’re interested in seeing what I’ve been doing and eating in Thailand, please feel free to follow me.

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Spicy Fresh Tomato “Hell” Relish (น้ำพริกมะเขือเทศ)

Spicy Fresh Tomato Relish
A few weeks ago, I had a short conversation with @dawnwow on Twitter who said to me that she had always felt like pico de gallo was a flavor short of being Thai. I completely agreed with her. In fact, if you’re familiar with both Mexican and Thai cuisines, surely you’ve noticed some similarities as well (compare the roasted tomato sauce accompanying “crying tiger” in Simple Thai Food with roasted tomato salsa, for example).

That dialogue reminded me of a quick relish I frequently made when I was a new student in the US which, for some reason, I don’t make nearly as often any more. Back then, though, I practically lived on it. There would always be a batch in the refrigerator, ready to be used on anything I could afford to make or bring home. As a cash-challenged student, those things usually included a Thai omelet, some hard-boiled or medium-boiled eggs, or a store-bought rotisserie chicken one of which would last me for 3-4 days.

There were a small repertoire of quick, simple, affordable, and highly versatile dishes like this relish that saw me through those days when I had very little time and even less money. In many ways, I feel I owe my life to them. Continue Reading →

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A Tote Bag for Your Thoughts

I Love Pad Thai Tote Bag
Many of you have bought Simple Thai Food, and for that I thank you so very much. I hope you’ve found the book useful, and I would love to hear about what you’ve cooked from it. Every time you share with me photos of the dishes that you have made on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook, it makes me so excited and happy. Really, it does.

For those with a copy of Simple Thai Food (either a hard copy or the electronic version), can you please do me a favor? I need your help. I’d like to know what you think about a few things. There are 10 questions that I’d like to send to you. They’re pretty straightforward and shouldn’t take more than 15-20 minutes to answer. But it’s necessary that you have the book, because you won’t be able to answer the questions otherwise. Continue Reading →

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